Not quite what I expected from Airbnb

How to begin? My wife and I had never stayed at an Airbnb but needed a place in Anchorage, AK. This place was reasonable priced so we booked it.

Upon arrival, we were instructed to remove our shoes outside. Upon entering, we noticed a stairway down immediately adjacent to the front door… hazardous in my opinion, but we adapted. There was a faint animal smell to the whole place, but we have dogs; that was okay.

The room was one of two sharing a bathroom with nostalgic pictures of the host’s family. The mattress had one of those plastic protectors so I felt like an infant in a crib: very crinkly whenever I shifted in the bed. The oddest thing, among many, was that we were told that a certain cabinet held dishes for our use but we were not to use the floral dishes in the microwave. Why are they there? Why the extra rules? Just remove them.

We discovered that to go to Anchorage proper required a $20 Uber. We quickly learned how to use the bus which was its own adventure. My expectation was that we would be in a slightly or mostly separated part of the house and rarely see our hosts. Such was not the case. We got up early one morning and our host was at the kitchen table where breakfast was available. She greeted us nicely but it was just a little off putting. If you like going to your Aunt Mable’s and having her follow your every move you will love it.

We had spent two nights and got a message asking if we would like the sheets changed. The host entered our room and moved our belongings while we were out. No smoking, but the host smoked on front porch adjacent to our window. The smell of cat was pervasive. What can I say? Not wanting to be a jerk, I posted the briefest review possible and will ask more questions the next time we book an Airbnb. Not hell, but not the best.

Posted in Airbnb Guest Stories and tagged , , , , , .


  1. My God…why on earth he thought his room was separate from rest of the house??Did it say on a listing that that’s the case. And he expected to never see his host who actually lives in the house…this is as ludicrous as it gets.
    I recently got yelled at because a guest wanted to have barbeque in my house and invite guests. Not even that all of this against house rules …but the fact he actually believed its possible. He said: I paid money..why can’t I bring friends . Before I kicked him out , I jokingly asked if he wants us to leave so he can have house to himself and .. believe me there was a moment when i saw in his eyes that he welcomed the idea ?

  2. Yet again another terrible entitled airbnb guest that should stick to hotels as you clearly have no idea what airbnb is about!. Remember you are a GUEST in someones HOME! not a hotel!

    This is why I am shutting down my airbnb at the end of the season this year.. I’m just honouring the guests I have already booked because the majority are turning into people like the poster here and when you look in the mirror THAT is why a lot of hosts like myself have had enough.

    People really do = shit these days.

  3. This review is funny, but real in a way. So many people expect airbnb stays to be like a hotel, with consistent and predictable place. Many ask about breakfast before even reading the listing. Shared housing and peer to peer platforms are more about having an experience, meeting people, and getting more culture or a feel for what it is like to be a local. You have to use tools like messaging, reviews, age of listing, along with social savvy engineering. You learn to see red flags on listings as you get experience. It only makes sense to start more nearby with a short trip and work up to international travel … just like any travel style.
    The more you look for the “best deal” or an “unbelievable deal”, the more you will be disappointed and get scammed. When you are not so greedy and willing to pay the going rates for an area you tend to skip those scams. When you just want to meet someone to “make a local connection” you will be happy!

    I would say the above stay in Anchorage was a good experience, considering they accepted pets and it was a “room rental”. Would you really expect the place to NOT smell of pets when you know, and are selecting the place for that very reason so you can bring your pet? It is always hard to see the whole story when a story is so incomplete.

    Were is the listing number/name?
    What was the price and length of stay?
    Did the traveler even read the whole listing, including the “category” and details of shared areas?

    As a host I had one guest from Switzerland (Thomas) that gave a bad 1 star review because “he thought my cabin was in a sunny, open area”. My listing is very detailed showing all amenities and has redwoods in all the pics, and descriptions. Maps show my listing in a global destination of redwood forests. This guy was just an arrogant AH. It is bound to happen every after hundreds of guests! My typical traveler is amazing at least 95% of the time! That is much better than you will get as a monthly landlord! I would guess he is a banker that wanted to stay at the finest hotels, and maybe the family wanted a redwood experience like most travelers! I even requested that Thomas correct his review and he replied “it wasn’t what he expected”. This is just UN-acceptable behavior from a “host traveler” that speaks English. Of course it does help to read the listing and look at the pics.

    Here is Thomas’s vacation home near Zurich. Maybe an airbnb ski bum traveler can give him a poor review for being in a ski area! Ask him if he likes Big Sur! Wouldn’t that be funny! It seems like a generic/IKEA/Hyatt type condo. It appears to be empty most of the time and not really marketed. BTW airbnb puts these type of “low occupancy listings” at a super low ranking on searches. It is typical for a ski area.
    Karma lives …..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *